It would be fair to say I’m not a natural crafter. I try really hard, but I lack finesse. Even when I put a lot of thought into something, it tends to end up looking like a small child has made it.
And this is why I have children!
If my craft attempts turn out a little squiffy, I can just say that Belle made them. So today, ‘Belle’ has been making Halloween trick or treat balloons! Seriously though, we did actually make these together and I would suggest that they are exactly the sort of wholesome Halloween craft activity that would be ideal to do as a family. Belle even got a friend from next door over to help, and they had a lot of fun playing with the Balloon Time helium canister and decorating the balloons.
The idea behind them is to have something actually exciting to give out to trick or treaters when they come to call, rather than just chucking them a couple of bags of Haribo and sending them on their way. The trick or treat balloons are filled with helium, and weighed down with a spooky home made box. Inside the box is either a treat – like a Screme Egg – or a trick – like a plastic cockroach. The unsuspecting trick or treater has to choose a balloon and accept the consequences!
Here we go then…
First up you’ll need to gather your materials. The beauty of this activity is that you can get as creative as you want, so do use bits and bobs you have to hand and don’t feel tied to a list. For my trick or treat balloons I used:
- A canister of Balloon Time helium.
- Orange and black balloons
- Pens for decorating – we had a black Sharpie and a white paint pen
- Orange and black card
- Paper doilies as a stencil
- Black spray paint
- Glue, sellotape, scissors and a craft knife for scoring
- A selection of treats and tricks
The first job is to make your boxes. A 7cm x 7cm x 7cm cube works well as the net fits perfectly onto a sheet of A4 card and it’s just the right size to hold a Screme Egg. I wanted to give my orange boxes a black lacy look, so I used black spray paint and a cut up doily.
Then you need to draw yourself a net, to make your box from. This was definitely my favourite bit. When I was little I loved making boxes and would spend ages designing nets and decorating them. There is something wonderfully satisfying about scoring along the edges and feeling the box come to life in your hands as the sides fold up and the edges come together.
I discovered that the doily looked rather nice after it had been sprayed, and the plain white worked well against the black, so I made a selection of different designs. This is where you could get creative or let the kids do their thing with some felt time or paints.
Once you’ve made up your boxes, you can fill them up with your tricks and treats. Be careful at this point not to accidentally eat any of the Screme Eggs. It’s easily done in my experience.
Next up is the fun bit, the balloons! For this you’ll need a tank of Balloon Time helium, so that your balloons can float menacingly above your boxes. I usually buy mine from Asda, which is just around the corner from me. It’s really easy to use – just pop your balloon on the nozzle and press down to let the air in.
Playing with helium always reminds me of Bee’s 18th birthday, when I attached 18 presents to the bottom of helium filled balloons and dotted them all over the living room.
Once your balloons are full of helium, hold them tightly while you decorate them. This is another lovely bit for children to do as there are loads of really simple, spooky designs – pumpkin faces work well on the orange balloons, and of course a black balloon lends itself very well to a scary ghost or spider’s web.
Tie a ribbon around each box and then to a balloon and there you have it, Halloween trick or treat balloons!
What will you be doing for Halloween this year?
Produced in association with Balloon Time.